The First to Follow

The Apostles of Jesus

John R. Claypool

Apr/2008, 148 Pages, Hardback, 5 x 7

ISBN-13: 9780819222961



An examination of Jesus’s relationships with each of his first disciples other reveals ways to deepen our relationship with Him.

One of the first things Jesus did in his ministry was to reach out to twelve individuals and draw them into his circle of close companionship with him. This series is about those twelve apostles, their relationships with Jesus and with each other, and what dynamics of that community can teach us.

Jesus did not wait for people to be perfect in order to call them into the circle of God’s love. As we look at those who Jesus called, and consider ourselves as part of that ever enlarging circle, we gain not only a deeper sense of our reality, but also a deeper sense of how Christ wants to work with us.

Based on talks given at St. Luke’s Episcopal Church, Birmingham, and more recently The Chautauqua Institute, these lectures have been edited by Ann W. Claypool in her husband’s memory.

John R. Claypool was a pastor, preacher, author, and theologian. He was initially ordained as a Southern Baptist and pastored for thirty years in that denomination. He became an Episcopal priest in 1986 and served as rector of St. Luke’s Episcopal Church in Birmingham, Alabama, until his retirement in 2000. Though he died in 2005, his words continue to provide hope and comfort.

"This book consists of a series of sermons about the apostles of Jesus. They were delivered at St. Luke's Church, Birmingham, Alabama, where John Claypool was rector, and elsewhere, and collected and edited by Ann W. Claypool, the author's widow. His chapter on Thaddeus, 'the forgotten saint,' is intriguing. This little book is a gem."—The Living Church

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